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  • Automatic random height adjustment

    My Craftsman router appears to have developed an automatic random height adjustment feature.
    I told LOML that I'd like a Triton.

    Thing is, I'm making a jewelry box for my daughter ---- and it has a maple inlay on walnut.
    I'll pass the lid through a roundover bit ---- so it's important that the inlay fit exactly.

    I might go with a Dado (non-wobbler). Any other recommendations?

  • #2
    Sorry, I forgot this thread was started. Many years ago, I inherited a Craftsman 1/4" collet trigger switched router from my Father-In-Law. I think it was well used, but at the time, it was the only thing I could afford. One day I was using it with a 1/2" roundover bit on a deck I was building. The router suddenly lost its depth setting, climbed up the workpiece, jerked out of my two handed grip, and onto my right index finger. The still spinning bit took most of my finger nail and some skin from the top of my finger. The finger nail eventually grew back, but the cuticle retains the scar from the wound several decades later. The router went back into its carrying case never to be used again. I eventually replaced the router with a big 15 amp. plunge router with no trigger switch. As for the inlay cutting, I usually use my Ryobi motor tool set up as a router or my Ryobi trim router both with a guide fence. I actually have 7 routers now as you can never have too many. Wait, that's clamps. Seven routers is probably bordering on silly (or something worse).
    Jim Frye
    The Nut in the Cellar.

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    • atgcpaul
      atgcpaul commented
      Editing a comment
      Holy carp! That sounds horrifying. I'm sorry that happened to you.

      A little while after I mounted by Bosch router to the BT3100 router table, the nuts and bolts I used backed out from the vibration and the still spinning router fell to the floor. I watched the bit lower itself in the table in what felt like slo-mo and luckily jumped out of the way.

  • #3
    I startend out with a craftsman in the late 60's and then a second one back in the mid 70's. I never had a height setting problem and really liked them. I started out with a few pilot bits (no bearings) and quickly bought a few cheap Sears carbide bits. In the early 90's I bought a Porter Cable 690. That thing made me realize how underpowered and bits of vibration that the Craftsman routers had. Since I got that 690, I bought a second 690 about 10 years later. I now have 2 690s, a step up (forget the model) VS slow start PC. And I do have a large Craftsman plunge router in my router center. I also have a small 1/4 inch router and just ordered a Ridgid trim router - I liked it because of the fine adjustment for the height setting. Just hope it holds its height.
    Last edited by leehljp; 11-18-2019, 05:29 PM.
    Hank Lee

    Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

    Comment


    • LCHIEN
      LCHIEN commented
      Editing a comment
      PC's step up in router models was the PC895 series.

  • #4
    Originally posted by durango dude View Post
    My Craftsman router appears to have developed an automatic random height adjustment feature.
    I told LOML that I'd like a Triton.

    Thing is, I'm making a jewelry box for my daughter ---- and it has a maple inlay on walnut.
    I'll pass the lid through a roundover bit ---- so it's important that the inlay fit exactly.

    I might go with a Dado (non-wobbler). Any other recommendations?
    Are you sure the automatic random height adjustment was not self inflicted to justify a new Triton router?
    Not that you don't deserve it but sometimes these things need a bit of rationalization.



    Loring in Katy, TX USA
    If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
    BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

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    • #5
      Originally posted by durango dude View Post
      Thing is, I'm making a jewelry box for my daughter ---- and it has a maple inlay on walnut.
      I'll pass the lid through a roundover bit ---- so it's important that the inlay fit exactly.

      I might go with a Dado (non-wobbler). Any other recommendations?
      If it's a through groove, I always reach for the dado stack first. I've done stopped grooves with a dado blade before but it's not really worth it for shallow cuts plus it has a slight pucker factor to it.

      I had a homemade router fence which I really put no love into. Whenever I get back a shop, that will be one of my first projects.

      Comment


      • #6
        Did you bottom out the bit? Some crazy physics causes it to loosen and move when you do that. The bit should be at least 1/8 out from bottoming out. Also clean the shank and collet with a solvent to be sure there's no gunk in there. I've received a couple of bits that had some of the wax protectant stuff on the collet as well as the cutting parts.

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        • #7
          I once had an old Ryobi router that started rusting a bit in the collet. Just enough that it had a similar effect if I didn't really crank the bit down. I tried brushing it out as beat best I could, but that wasn't terribly easy on a 1/4" collet. It eventually bit the dust when I couldn't get a bit loose and either rounded the collet nut, or I think sheared the piece that slid into the shaft to keep it from spinning when you turned the collet nut.

          It was a good excuse though to upgrade to a nice Bosch router. I could finally run 1/2" bits, had a plunge base, and the collet is replaceable instead of part of the motor shaft, so if it ever got a little bit rusty and I couldn't clean it, I could replace it.

          Comment


          • #8
            If the shank of the router bit is worn - so it's no longer a perfect circle and instead has a slight hourglass shape, the collet will not be able to grip the bit most of the time. It's similar to the reason you don't put a router bit all the way into the collet: at the very top of the shank there is typically a fillet or "blending" of the shank shape into the bit shape. This fillet area eliminates corners in the shank-to-bit interface; corners tend to concentrate stress leading to cracks and eventual failures. The fillet blending eliminates the stress concentrations... but if the collet tries to grip the fillet it won't have much of a bite grabbing that tapered section. Once the bit starts spinning, the motion and vibrations will cause the bit to drift slightly... now the collet is gripping a smaller diameter (lower on the fillet) so it suddenly isn't tight... and the bit continues to move.

            An hourglass wear pattern in the shank, unless the collet happens to be gripping the narrowest portion, is like two fillets. Either way, the taper makes the bit want to walk in/out of the collet towards the smallest diameter.

            Of course, anything that makes the collet "seem tight" but isn't actually tight will let the bit drift as well. There are metric bit shanks and metric collars... they're close to but not quite the same size as the standard 1/4 and 1/2 inch standard used in the US. Mixing them will result in the collet petals (whatever they're called) tightly bunching together edge-to-edge before they really grip the bit shank so the grip isn't as tight as it should be. Rust, debris in the collet, bent petals, etc. interfere as well. Imagine a small bit of metal on one of the petals... that "lump" will hold that petal away from the bit shank so only a teeny bit of contact exists - the size of the lump - rather than the full edge of the petal. Ergo a weak grip that also wants to roll off that lump.

            And out-of-balance router bit can rattle itself free as well. High RPMs combined with an imbalance can generate some surprisingly large side loads on the collet, challenging its ability to grip. If only this particular bit doesn't work in the router, I'd suspect it is out-of-balance, has a worn (hourglass) shank, or might be metric. If several bits drift in this router... then blame the router/collet.

            mpc

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            • #9
              Originally posted by Carlos View Post
              Did you bottom out the bit? Some crazy physics causes it to loosen and move when you do that. The bit should be at least 1/8 out from bottoming out. Also clean the shank and collet with a solvent to be sure there's no gunk in there. I've received a couple of bits that had some of the wax protectant stuff on the collet as well as the cutting parts.
              I bought a bunch of O-rings several years ago to put on the 1/4 and 1/2 inch shanks to prevent the collar from slipping down. I noticed a few weeks ago that the O-rings had deteriorated and are falling apart. I need to do it again.

              I am 95% finished with my new Router Center (based on the original left behind in Japan) and it is usable now. But I need the o-rings.


              https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...r-construction
              Last edited by leehljp; 11-21-2019, 02:59 PM.
              Hank Lee

              Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

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